Digital Collections

This collection, the bulk of which is digitized here, consists of nylon-related photographs and ephemera collected by Joseph X. Labovsky, a lab assistant to Wallace Carothers, during the early stages of nylon development and production at DuPont. Primarily dating from the 1930s and 1940s, the photographs document the experimental work, semi-works and pilot plant stages that led to the commercial production of nylon, including the preparation of nylon polymers and the development of equipment such as spinning machines, salt kettles, and autoclaves. Photographs from the DuPont Experimental Research Station in Wilmington, Delaware make up the bulk of the collection, which also includes a smaller subset of photographs from DuPont's subsequent nylon plants in Seaford, Delaware and Martinsville, Virginia. Several photographs of Labovsky and other members of the technical staff complete the collection, which notably lacks any photographs of Wallace Carothers, the inventor of nylon.